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Challenges and Opportunities for Financing Species Conservation Gustavo FonsecaHead, Natural ResourcesGlobal Environment Facility
Global Environment Facility: Funding Global Biodiversity The GEF was established in 1992 to serve as the Financial Mechanism of the Convention on Biological Diversity, as well as other MultilateralEnvironmental Agreements
GEF Investments in biodiversity amount to $3.1 billion, with $9billion in cofinancing, directed at 1,000 projects in more than 155 countries • Investment resulted in the creation and improved management of 2,809 protected areas, spanning 708 million hectares, and helped achieve global target of 10% of the world’s land under protection • Enabled productive landscapes and seascapes to become biodiversity-friendly, spanning 274 million hectares • Pioneer investor in testing and scaling-up of conservation trust funds and payment for ecosystem services schemes GEF’s Investments in Biodiversity
GEF Biodiversity strategy encompasses five objectives • improve the sustainability of protected area systems • mainstream biodiversity conservation and sustainable use into production landscapes/seascapes and sectors • build capacity to implement the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety • build capacity on access to genetic resources and benefit sharing • integrate CBD obligations into national planning processes through enabling activities
NewGEF5 NewGEF5 CBD Guidance to the GEF • Strategic Objective 1: Promote conservation of biological diversity, including through catalyzing sustainability of protected area systemsOutcome 1: Reduction in financing gap to meet protected area management objectives by securing increased revenue and diversification of revenue streams to meet total expendituresOutcome 2: Increased coverage of marine ecosystems globally and in national protected area systemsOutcome 3: Improved ecosystem coverage of under-represented terrestrial ecosystems areas as part of national protected area systemsOutcome 4: Improved management of terrestrial and marine protected areas Outcome 5: Resilience of the components of biodiversity to adapt to climate change is maintained and enhanced Outcome 6: Conservation status of threatened species is improved
GEF Funding for Species Conservation GEF-5: 2010-2014GEF-4: 2006-2010GEF-3: 2002-2006GEF-2: 1998-2002GEF-1: 1994-1998Pilot Phase: 1992
Coverage of Threatened Species in Protected Area Projects Funded by the GEF • Protected areas projects span the distribution of 647 threatened species: 335 Critically Endangered (CR) 267 Endangered (EN) 45 Vulnerable (VU) Projects addressing these protected areas are responsible for 17% of the grants awarded by the GEF in the biodiversity focal area and 25% of all investments benefitting protected areas
Sample of Species Targeted by GEF Investments • Asiatic Cheetah • Black Rhinos • Grevy's Zebra • African Elephant • Tiger • Saiga Antelope • Snow Leopard • Mountain Gorilla • Dugong • Mediterranean Monk Seal • Siberian Crane • Migratory birds • AZE species from sites in Colombia and Peru • Bactrian Camel • Coral forming species • Medicinal plants
Why Protect Species? • Conservation of species dominated the first generation of biodiversity actions in modern times. • U.S. Endangered Species Act of 1973 recognized that endangered and threatened species of wildlife and plants “are of esthetic, ecological, educational, historical, recreational, and scientific value to the Nation and its people.” • Conservation actions carried out in the United States under the Endangered Species Act have been successful in preventing extinction for 99 percent of the species that are listed as endangered or threatened. • Many developing countries have emulated the same model of jump starting biodiversity conservation via a focus on species. • Species may be good indicators of environmental quality and therefore efforts directed towards their protection may “trickle out” to benefit the ecosystem as a whole. • Precautionary principle: we don’t fully understand the consequences of species extinctions to human welfare or their future intrinsic values.
Challenges and Disincentives • Assumption that ecosystem/habitat-level conservation is more cost-effective in addressing biodiversity conservation (predominance of the coarse filter approach) • Assumption that threatened species are irrelevant to the provision of ecosystem services • Triage school: many species are beyond recovery in absence of very high investments that could otherwise support other priorities • “Functionally-extinct species” are lesser priorities • Pollyanna school: most species are more resilient than previously assumed, and can do well in human-dominated landscapes (e.g., orangutans in oil-palm plantations)
Opportunities and Incentives • Species conservation is a tangible endeavor • Species conservation results are attainable within reasonable periods of time • The public relates to the plight of threatened species (at least the charismatic ones) • Species conservation can deliver additional benefits • Species conservation is cost-effective
Revitalizing Species Conservation • Explore community connections • Explore private sector connections • Build on protected area efforts • Build on prioritization schemes (e.g, IBAs, KBAs, AZE sites) • Build on CBD COP decision to “expand ecosystem and threatened species representation withinprotected area systems” • Build on the implementation of the Aichi Targets • Disseminate successful experiences
The Public Sector and Civil Society (NGOs)have done the bulk of the work on species conservation But there is a vital missing partner…… The Private Sector
”United Nations says case for saving species more powerful than climate change‘” Guardian, May 2010